CARDINALS CORNER

Jeremiah: Cardinals can’t go wrong with any of top 3 WR NFL Draft prospects

Feb 22, 2024, 4:37 PM

For a lot of Cardinals fans, it’s trade down or add an offensive tackle if top wide receiving prospect Marvin Harrison Jr. is off the board before Arizona picks fourth overall in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Ask NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah, though, and there’s still plenty to be excited about when looking at either LSU’s Malik Nabers or Washington’s Rome Odunze.

In fact, if was acting in place of general manager Monti Ossenfort, Arizona would be walking away with a premier pass catcher at No. 4 regardless of how the draft board shakes out this April.

“I think if you just look purely off of grade and not positional value, I think you could make a case the three highest graded players in this draft are those three receivers. They are outstanding,” Jeremiah said on a conference call Thursday. “I think they’re all going to be No. 1 guys where they go. You get different flavors.

“With Marvin, you get the big power forward. … If you’re in Arizona and you see (Odunze), I think you’ll see similarities to (Larry Fitzgerald) in how he attacks the ball and goes out and gets it. And then Nabers is just like a stick of dynamite. He’s super, super explosive. Just get the ball in his hands and let him go.”

Jeremiah added the Cardinals should be all about adding offensive firepower after finishing near the back of the pack in numerous offensive categories despite the upped play Arizona saw with quarterback Kyler Murray back under center midway through the season following his recovery from a torn ACL.

Any of the three top wideouts Jeremiah mentioned fill that box and then some.

NFL Draft prospect Rome Odunze ‘too good to be true’

It’s clear Jeremiah expects big things out of this year’s top three receiving prospects.

It’s also clear who he has circled as his favorite prospect this NFL Draft in Odunze.

“I like big, fast, physical, smart, tough guys who can go play above the rim and who have some route polish to them,” Jeremiah said. “As a player, I love what he has from a skillset standpoint. I think it all translates. I think when you look at big games in the NFL, especially going into the postseason, I think that space disappears and you got to have guys who can win and vibe with bodies around him and he can do that. And that’s not to say he can’t run.

“I love the balance and the energy to him. I love the fact that — even though you might have to coach some of this out of him — he hates running out of bounds. … He tries to get everything he can get. He’s just a real, real competitive football player. … And he’s just the nicest guy in the world. Just a great dude. It’s almost too good to be true with everything I hear about this kid.”

The Patriot Way to go is quarterback at No. 3 overall

When you look at the teams ahead of the Cardinals in the draft order — the Chicago Bears, Washington Commanders and New England Patriots — their needs include landing a franchise quarterback.

That’s not to say there isn’t the chance of the three bypasses a signal caller of the future for Harrison.

In Jeremiah’s eyes, that seems unlikely given his grade of Caleb Williams that the QB doesn’t go No. 1 overall and Washington clearly ready to move on from the Sam Howell Experience.

And despite mock-drafting Harrison to the Patriots in his second of the offseason — albeit with a caveat — Jeremiah thinks quarterback is in the cards for the New England at No. 3.

“To me, it would be tough to pass on a quarterback,” the draft analyst said. “You’re not guaranteed to be up here again. There’s no guarantee in future years of what it looks like at the position. I think you have 3 guys who are worthy of consideration there.”

“I look at whichever one is there, if it’s any of those top three
quarterbacks, those guys that bring so much energy and life to your franchise.
It just feels right. You have new leadership in place.”

Should the Arizona Cardinals entertain trade offers for the No. 27th overall pick?

The needs are known when it comes to the Cardinals. And as Ossenfort told Arizona Sports’ Bickley & Marotta on Thursday, Arizona’s ultimately focused on building the team back up through the NFL Draft.

But if a team comes calling for the No. 27 pick after Arizona lands a top talent at fourth overall, should the Cardinals consider an offer?

“They’re going to have elite players to pick right there at four. Everybody has been connecting them to the wideouts and I think there’s a really good chance they have their choice of any of them,’ Jeremiah said. “If we’re going to go off that that they’re going to stick and pick and take the wideout at No. 4, then you look at where they’re picking at the bottom of the first round.

“I would definitely entertain the phone call if you were to get it there at 27, knowing that you already have the playmaker in the bag there at pick No. 4.”

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